McDonnell, Mary 1952–

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McDONNELL, Mary 1952–


Born April 28, 1952, in Wilkes Barre, PA; raised in Ithaca, NY; married Randle Mell (an actor); children: Olivia, Michael. Education: Attended State University of New York Fredonia.

Addresses: Agent—The Gersh Agency, 232 North Canon Dr., Beverly Hills, CA 90210. Manager—Perri Kipperman, Principal Entertainment, 1964 Westwood Blvd., Suite 400, Los Angeles, CA 90025 and 243 West 72nd St., New York, NY 10023.

Career: Actress. Actors Theatre of Louisville, Louisville, KY, guest artist, 1982. Worked with summer theatre students at Vassar College; teacher at New York Stage and Film Company and in private practice.

Awards, Honors: Obie Award, Village Voice, outstanding performance, 1981, for Still Life; Academy Award nomination, best supporting actress, and Golden Globe Award nomination, best performance by an actress in a supporting role in a motion picture, both 1991, for Dances with Wolves; Academy Award nomination, best actress, and Golden Globe Award nomination, best performance by an actress in a motion picture—drama, both 1993, for Passion Fish; Emmy Award nomination, outstanding guest actress in a drama series, 2002, for ER.


Film Appearances:

Lady Capulet, Garbo Talks, Metro–Goldwyn–Mayer/United Artists, 1984.

Elma Radnor, Matewan, Cinecom, 1987.

Paula Warsaw, Tiger Warsaw (also known as The Tiger), Sony Pictures Entertainment, 1988.

Stands with a Fist, Dances with Wolves, Orion, 1990.

Claire, Grand Canyon, Twentieth Century–Fox, 1991.

Liz, Sneakers, Universal, 1992.

May–Alice Culhane, Passion Fish, Miramax, 1992.

Jenny Bell, Blue Chips, Paramount, 1994.

First lady Marilyn Whitmore, Independence Day (also known as ID4), Twentieth Century–Fox, 1996.

Prioress, Mariette in Ecstasy, 1996.

Diane, You Can Thank Me Later (also known as Flashpoint), 1998.

Voice of Zoe's mother, Spanish Fly, 1998.

Althea Brockett, Mumford, Buena Vista, 1999.

Narrator, Amargosa, Triple Play Pictures, 2000.

Mrs. Rose Darko, Donnie Darko, Pandora Cinema/Newmarket Film Group, 2001.

Amy Banks, Crazy Like a Fox, 2003.

Margaret, Nola, Fireworks Pictures/Samuel Goldwyn, 2003.

Television Appearances; Series:

Claudia Colfax, As the World Turns, CBS, 1980.

Dr. Eve Sheridan, E/R, CBS, 1984–1985.

Dorothy "Dott" Emerson, High Society, CBS, 1995–1996.

Rachel Caulfield, Ryan Caulfield: Year One, Fox, 1999.

Eleanor Carter, a recurring role, ER (also known as Emergency Room), NBC, 2001–2002.

President Laura Roslin, Battlestar Galactica, Sci–Fi Channel, beginning c. 2005.

Television Appearances; Miniseries:

Rose Baumler, "Arthur Miller's The American Clock" (also known as "The American Clock"), TNT Screenworks, TNT, 1993.

Laura Roslin, Battlestar Galactica, Sci–Fi Channel, 2003.

Television Appearances; Movies:

Terri, Money on the Side, ABC, 1982.

Gabriella Estrada, Courage, CBS, 1986.

Teri Hansen, Woman Undone (also known as Joshua Tree), Showtime, 1996.

Judge, 12 Angry Men, Showtime, 1997.

Sybil Goldrich, Two Voices (also known as Two Small Voices), Lifetime, 1997.

Dora Overton, Evidence of Blood, The Movie Channel, 1998.

Linda Marsh, Replacing Dad, CBS, 1998.

Mary Shushan, Behind the Mask, CBS, 1999.

Laura Brown, For All Time, CBS, 2000.

Susan Shaw, A Father's Choice, CBS, 2000.

Mrs. Harris, HBO, 2005.

Television Appearances; Specials:

Herself, The Making of "Dances with Wolves," 1989.

Alexandra Bergson, "O, Pioneers!," American Playhouse, PBS, 1991.

National Memorial Day Concert 1994, PBS, 1994.

Herself, The Making of "Independence Day," 1996.

The Sci–Fi Channel's Invasion of Independence Day, Sci–Fi Channel, 1996.

Narrator, William Styron: The Way of the Writer, PBS, 1997.

Narrator, Fly Girls, PBS, 1999.

Helen Staples, "The Locket," Hallmark Hall of Fame, CBS, 2002.

Television Appearances; Episodic:

Guest, The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, NBC, 1991.

Jules O'Grady, "Bad Hair Week," That's Life, CBS, 2000.

Sister Theodore, "Minute by Minute," Touched by an Angel, CBS, 2002.

Appeared as Jules O'Grady in "Baum's Thesis," an unaired episode of That's Life, CBS.

Television Appearances; Pilots:

Rachel Caulfield, Ryan Caulfield: Year One, Fox, 1999.

Jane Eastman, Chestnut Hill, NBC, 2001.

The Corsairs (also known as Rosebud and Rosebud, My Ass), ABC, 2002.

Radio Appearances; Specials:

"An American Daughter," The Play's the Thing, LA Theatre Works, KCRW–Radio, 2004.

Stage Appearances:

Shelly, Buried Child, Theatre for a New City, Theatre de Lys (now Lucille Lortel Theatre), 1978–1979, then Circle Repertory Theatre, New York City, 1979.

Sylvia Plath, Letters Home, American Place Theatre, New York City, 1979.

Cheryl, Still Life, American Place Theatre, 1981.

Mary Alice, The Death of a Miner, Portland Stage Company, Portland, ME, 1981–1982, then American Place Theatre, 1982.

Nessa, A Weekend Near Madison, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Louisville, KY, 1982, then Astor Place Theatre, New York City, 1983.

Simone Engel, Black Angel, Circle Repertory Theatre, 1982–1983.

Red River, Goodman Theatre, Chicago, IL, 1982–1983.

Jill, All Night Long, McGinn–Cazale Theatre, New York City, 1984.

Three Sisters, Guthrie Theatre, Minneapolis, MN, 1984–1985.

Linda Rotunda, Savage in Limbo, Double Image Theatre, New York City, 1985.

Stitchers and Starlight Talkers, Yale Repertory Theatre, New Haven, CT, 1985–1986.

Mary Ann White, Execution of Justice, Virginia Theatre, New York City, 1986.

Nora, A Doll's House, Hartford Stage Company, Hartford, CT, 1986–1987.

Sharon, Three Ways Home, Astor Place Theatre, 1988.

Heidi Holland, The Heidi Chronicles, Plymouth Theatre, New York City, 1990.

Alexandra Bergson, O, Pioneers!, c. 1991.

Alma Winemiller, Summer and Smoke (also known as The Eccentricities of a Nightingale), Roundabout Theatre Company, Criterion Center Stage Right Theatre, New York City, 1996.

Lady Torrance, Orpheus Descending, San Jose Repertory Theatre, San Jose, CA, 2003.

Also appeared as the grandmother in After Magritte; as Fanny Wilton, John Gabriel Borkman; as Helena, A Midsummer Night's Dream; as Olivia, Twelfth Night; and in The Crucible, National Anthem, and The Vagina Monologues, Westside Theatre Downstairs, New York City. Also appeared in productions at Hartford Stage Company, Hartford, CT; Huntington Theatre, Boston, MA; and Long Wharf Theatre Company, New Haven, CT.



Herself and first lady Marilyn Whitmore in archive footage, Independence Day: The ID4 Invasion, 1996.



Celebrity Sleuth, Volume 10, number 2, 1996, pp. 74–75.

Empire (Great Britain), Issue 52, pp. 62–63.

New York Times, March 18, 1993.

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McDonnell, Mary 1952–

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